Food & Adventures

Thursday 25 October 2018

Exploring the North Tyneside Coast with Tyne and Wear Metro

*This is a collaborative post

Growing up in Wallsend in North Tyneside, Tyne and Wear metro played a big part in my life. Whether it was going to spend my pocket money in Eldon Square or Monument Mall as a teenager or travelling to Whitley Bay or Newcastle for nights out with my mates in my late teens and early twenties, the Metro was such a convenient mode of transport. Where I live now (in Northumberland) doesn't have a Metro line but does have some great bus links to Metro stations. I was recently asked by Tyne and Wear Metro to visit some of the bars and restaurants in various locations in and around Metro stations and to try out their Pay as You go Pop Card.

The Pop card is a pretty handy way of getting around the Metro and save some money as using the card is 30p cheaper than buying single fare and there is a daily cap which is 40p cheaper than a Day Ticket. The card is free but you have to top up at least £10 when you get it, you can get the card online, A Nexus TravelShop or Selected Payzone stores. The card is really easy as it is contactless and there are scanners to tap in and out at the start and end of your journey and it calculates the cheapest ticket for your journey and deducts the balance. You can also use the card to pay for tickets on the Shields Ferry and on buses in Tyne and Wear, County Durham, Tees Valley and Northumberland which is great for me.

Our first stop was at Monkseaton Metro Station, We decided to start by having some lunch and there is a great restaurant called Omni just a 2 minute walk from the station. Omni serves Asian Street food and it tastes really authentic. Mrs. Cool went for the Crispy Salt and Chilli Squid Salad and I had the Panko Chicken Katsu Curry from the specials board. We also shared some Pork Dumplings and since we are using public transport we were able to have a some beers.

I had asked for recommendations of places to visit on my twitter and facebook and everyone was saying we had to go to Left Luggage Room so that's where we headed next. Left Luggage Room is a micropub in Monkseaton Metro station specialising Craft Beers, wines and specialist spirits, I'm a big fan of Craft Beers and can see why it had so many recommendations. This was my favourite place we visited, I really loved the vibe of this rustic nook and I love their ethos of no alcopops, no cheap lagers, no televisions just great conversation. I had a lush pint of Stout from Two by Two brewery (which I later found out is from my hometown of Wallsend) and Mrs. Cool had a glass of Prosecco. It was pretty quiet on the Wednesday afternoon we visited and me and Mrs. Cool were able to have good chat I noticed there was a guitar hanging on the wall asking people to 'Play Me' so I can imagine there is a great atmosphere when it is busier.

I was sad to leave Left Luggage Room but it was time for us to move on and next we headed to Whitley Bay Metro Station (which is the next stop and only took a couple of minutes) to visit Olives at the Station. This is another great restaurant right in the Metro station, they have wide ranges of dishes on their menu as well as a fully stocked bar and some great looking scones and cakes. We just had a drink here, I went for a pint of the Olives Lager and Mrs. Cool had a Christmassy cocktail of Gingerbread Vodka with lemonade (it's never too early for Cristmassy drinks).

We next had a walk along the Promenade from Whitley Bay Metro station towards the Spanish City, it only takes around 15 minutes at a leisurely pace. The refurbished Spanish City is looking pretty sweet with bars and restaurants replacing the arcades and funfair I remember from my childhood. We went to the Champagne Bar for some more cocktails, Mrs. Cool had the Espresso Martini and I had the Old Fashioned, these are our go-to cocktails when we're having a few drinks and the ones at the Champagne Bar are spot on.

We headed back to the Metro station to go a few more stops to Tynemouth to try Platform 2 another micropub right in the station. Platform 2 is like a polished version of Left Luggage Room and again has a good selection of Beers, there was no guitar on the wall this time but a cool looking old school juke box. I noticed another beer from Two by Two Brewery this one was a Blood Orange IPA and Mrs. Cool went for a coffee (she was pacing herself). My pint was pretty good (not as good as the stout I had at Left Luggage but still pretty good) but Mrs. Cool's coffee was quite bland, best stick to their main selling point if you're visiting.

After our drinks we got back on the Metro and headed to Whitley Bay again to catch Happy Hour at Evans Bistro, 2 cocktails for £8, 5.30-7.30 Tuesday to Friday. We both had the The Evans cocktail which is Sea Glass Whitley Bay Gin with Lime, Cranberry Juice topped with Soda. There is a good cocktail menu here (and if you're after a meal the food is first class too), this was a nice cocktail to end our day out.

We walked to Whitley Bay town centre to get back on the bus to take us home. It was so easy and quick getting around all of these great places with Tyne and Wear Metro and cheap too. If we had tried this day out with a taxi we would have been looking at over £50 on travel but with the PAYG Pop card I still have money left over from my initial £10 top up so another day out will be on the cards soon.

Well, that's all for now.


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Exploring the North Tyneside Coast with Tyne and Wear Metro


1 comment

  1. Love your pictures, you're making me want to go on a Metro adventure! We used to use the Metro all the time before we had a car and we do quite like using it some weekends now so that we can both enjoy a drink, especially heading out towards the coast.

    STILL need to try Omni, it looks brilliant and I think Simon would love the micropubs, we've only recently discovered Olives at Whitley Bay having strolled past it so many times! So many hidden gems on the metro platforms!


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